Tag Archive for: innovative solutions
The German fashion retailer mister*lady relies on energy-efficient heating without dust and drafts. LK Metall installed an innovative heating and ventilation system as part of a new construction of a logistics center for the German fashion retailer mister*lady in Schwabach. An investment that has already proven itself in many ways, emphasizes mister*lady managing director, Rudolf Kempter.
Background: mister*lady GmbH moved its headquarters from Nuremberg to Schwabach. In addition to the new central administration with an area of 6,000 m², two logistics halls with an area of 4,500m² each were built. Each hall has 10 gates, a room height of about 7.50 m and a room volume of about 75,000 m³.
In particular, the climate-friendly heating and ventilation of the logistics halls posed a challenge. Managing Director Kempter was faced with a choice. “The architect, general contractor and other consultants recommended different solutions,” he recalls, “so with new construction, it’s important to find out exactly what the requirements are.” Of course, the warehouse activities had to be taken into account: The approximately 22 mister*lady employees moved about 15 million parts in about one million packages per year in single-shift operation. Around 3,600 arrivals and departures took place at the 10 loading stations.
Since the production halls employ the company’s own staff, Kempter is particularly concerned about their well-being: “A modern and energy-efficient solution was important. To achieve a good indoor climate for our people, the temperature distribution must be even and free of dust and drafts. Rudolf Kempter deliberately decided against using gas-fired dark radiators.
Technical structure of the hot air generators
The warm air generators installed under the ceiling draw in waste heat rising from the hall – such as heat generated by lighting or solar radiation – and filter it. In addition, fresh outside air can be drawn in. The air passes a stainless steel combustion chamber to bring it to the desired room temperature. Turbulent flow of the exhaust gases is generated inside the heat exchange tubes arranged on the left and right, thus ensuring optimized heat exchange. Special air outlets and return air ceiling fans distribute the air flow draught-free in the hall. The hot air distribution is controlled automatically by means of PI differential temperature control via measuring sensors in the working area and on the ceiling.
A control system regulates the temperature of the system intelligently and adapted to the wishes of mister*lady: The hall is heated individually as required. The desired room temperature is freely programmable. After an installation period of only one week, mister*lady was able to put the systems into operation.
Costs in view
Looking back, after a first winter heating season, the managing director’s expectations have been met: “The employees are satisfied. The air layering is super, as promised. The air is distributed evenly. There are no cold or warm corners, no trace of drafts.” The energy consumption is also convincing: “On normal working days, we need an average of 320 m³ of gas during the cold season, which corresponds to a cost of about €80,” says Rudolf Kempter.
Especially in the transitional period, the system does not require the burner to be switched on. Then the accumulated heat under the hall roof is already enough. The return air ceiling fans then distribute it evenly back to where it is needed. Great climate should also prevail in the summer at mister*lady. Here, the good hall insulation and the ventilation system play the supporting role. At night, the system draws in the cold outside air and has already ensured pleasantly cool temperatures in the logistics hall by the time the shift begins in the morning. This makes extra air conditioning superfluous.
Advantage: less space required for hall expansion
Another advantage of the plant will only come into play in the future. Rudolf Kempter has further plans for the expansion of the hall. He would like to add a lattice mezzanine at mid-hall height for administration. No problem thanks to the intelligent air distribution of the RBW 125. “With our heating solution, even the employees on the first floor still get warm feet. In addition, there is no need to maintain a minimum distance, as is required for radiant heaters. The space consumption would have been enormous with probably up to 70 radiant heaters needed in the logistics area,” he concludes.
Euphoniums, cajons and agogos – all these wonderful musical instruments can be found in Treppendorf in the Steigerwald in the 7,700 square meter logistics halls of the Thomann music store. In total, there are about 24,000 items here – from guitars and pianos to stringed instruments and various types of percussion instrument.
“We need a special indoor climate for storing musical instruments,” explains Stefan Thomann, co-founder and project manager for logistics at the music retailer. “The items are very sensitive; for example, if the humidity is too low, the tops of guitars can crack. With temperatures, constant air quality is especially crucial.”
Therefore, the company paid special attention to heating and air conditioning technology. Stefan Thomann: “For the pallet warehouse, we only had low temperature requirements because employees are not permanently working here. In the small parts storage area, on the other hand, we were aiming for a temperature of 16 to 17 degrees. But for incoming goods, it had to be a little warmer. The challenge with the technology: despite the three different temperature areas, it is one large, continuous hall.” This three-part temperature concept was realized by LK Metall. Two RBW direct-heated warm air generators with integrated mixed air equipment were used in the pallet and small parts warehouse, which were mounted on the hall ceiling between the two areas. An RBW warm air heater with integrated mixed air unit was also installed in the goods receiving area.
Music store Thomann
Evenly from the floor to the roof
The heating system is controlled by a building management system and several thermostats. If the temperature in one of the zones falls below a programmed set point, the respective heating system automatically turns on. Through the surface of the combustion chamber, the heat released by the burner is transferred directly to the passing air. Thus, up to 95 % of the energy used is converted directly into heat. In addition, further heat exchange of the flue gases takes place through the downstream, countercurrent heat exchange tubes, which are washed by the air flow along the entire length of the plant. At the end of the heat exchange pipes, the heated air leaves the plant via mixed air parts. Individually installed return air ceiling fans ensure uniform heat distribution over the entire height of the hall. A differential temperature control system also optimizes and reduces the temperature differences from the roof to the floor in the entire hall area to around 3 to 4 degrees.
A special feature of the system: the warm air generators can be used not only for heating, but also for ventilation. “In the summer months, the temperature in the hall is driven down by a summer night cooling system,” explains Harald Wimmer Sales Manager at LK-Metall. “This allows air temperature, air quality and air distribution to be adjusted as needed.”
Thanks to the finely tuned heating technology between the halls, the sensitive musical instruments will be safely stored in the future with regard to room temperature.
Reducing wastewater pollution from degreasing baths while saving costs in terms of environmental protection is an important issue in electroplating plants.
The manufactured components must be degreased and freed from corrosion protection before a painting or coating process. With the light liquid separator from LK Metall, it is possible to use the contaminated wash liquor in the degreasing bath for a significantly longer period of time without additional chemicals by extreme removal of the accumulating oil.
LK light liquid separator: suitably designed for degreasing processes
Continuously remove oil from wash liquor
To degrease the components, they are immersed in degreasing baths and cleaned with the help of cleaning chemicals at a temperature of up to 90 °C. The oils and greases (light liquids) remain in the bath and, after a certain concentration, lead to saturation of the wash liquor. In turn, the floating oils contaminate the components and lead to a loss of quality in further processing. Suction of the oil by a simple skimmer on the surface of the wash liquor is often insufficient and too low in efficiency. Integrated into existing galvanizing processes, the easy-to-operate and low-maintenance light liquid separator from LK Metall continuously removes the oil from the wash liquor. A physically operating oil separator built into the system solves this task reliably and particularly economically. The disposal intervals are considerably extended. The oil separator guarantees high safety and long service life.
Process water treatment: degreasing with LK separator system
Longer service life reduces disposal cycles
Fully integrated into the ongoing production process, the service life of the degreasing bath is extended from about one week to around eight weeks. Compared to weekly disposal, this means an increase in service life of up to 8 times and thus a significant reduction in disposal cycles. An additional cost savings is achieved in the reduced load on the neutralization plant. Thus, on average, more than 100 liters of pure oil are separated within the first eight weeks after startup. At the same time, this means a substantial saving in chemicals. Adapted to the corresponding size of the degreasing bath, the LK light liquid separator can be integrated into almost any production process.